August 4th, 2009
10:55 AM ET

Townhall or Townbrawl?

President Obama takes on critics of health care legislation in remarks last week at the White House.

President Obama takes on critics of health care legislation in remarks last week at the White House.

Tony Perkins
Family Research Council

Being home is no picnic for the Democrats in charge, as one blogger makes abundantly clear in a home video taken during a recent townhall meeting on health care. In a packed gymnasium, Sen. Arlen Specter (D-Penn.) and Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius were booed so loudly that you can barely hear their answers to some basic questions. The comments that were audible only managed to cause more outrage.

One audience member asked how Americans can be confident in Congress to reform the health care system when members won't even read the legislation. Sebelius's response? "I'm not a member of Congress," which apparently absolves her from understanding the $1 trillion plan her Department will be tasked with implementing. That answer is still better than Sen. Specter's explanation, which was, "...[W]e have to make judgments very fast, and every bill is... understood by me before I vote." Sebelius tried to interrupt the hissing crowd but her defense of Senate Democrats was almost impossible to hear amid the jeering.

Of course, the mainstream press would have us believe through carefully choreographed broadcasts that Americans are perplexed but receptive to the White House plan.

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Filed under: Health Care
soundoff (5 Responses)
  1. felicia

    I really think that congress and the rest of Washington big wigs should have to have the same insurance and same pension that the rest of us have to have.See how quick they fix everything,what is good for the goose should be good for the gander!!After all we are paying for their retirement and insurance anyway.So we should all be on the same page.

    August 4, 2009 at 1:22 pm |
  2. Stacy

    This article is completely disingenuous. As reported by Talking Points Memo and other outlets, these "spontaneous" protests aren't really so spontaneous after all, but rather the work of public relations firms and lobbyists, complete with a strategy memo on how to disrupt the town halls.

    August 4, 2009 at 12:50 pm |
  3. Melissa

    Let me add that if Sebellius had said "We have read it, and always read bills in full before voting", it would have been better, even if it was a lie.

    August 4, 2009 at 12:17 pm |
  4. Melissa

    No, the mainstream press says that Americans are receptive to change, it does NOT say that Americans are receptive to the White House plan.

    In fact, the current plan sucks and even they know it. Too many concessions to big business, and not enough true reform.

    We need Nationalized Health Care, not "change in name only" that the Republicans want.

    And Sebellius was booed because her answer was dumb. It doesn't matter whether she's a member of Congress or not. At least Specter's answer was better, if not all that great.

    August 4, 2009 at 12:15 pm |
  5. KIM-TN

    Let me make this clear.!!! We the people need to get out and make it clear that we don't have $1 trillion to pay for health plan. Health care reform is needed, but that can be done with out spending trillions.

    August 4, 2009 at 12:12 pm |